Joining a walking and/or running group or any program can seem intimidating. Very few people feel like an athlete from the first moment they hit the pavement. Even more experienced runners sometimes struggle with imposter syndrome because they don’t feel they are fast enough, or enjoy longer distances. While other runners with poor body image wonder if they will ever look the part. It is completely normal to feel self-conscious when starting a walking or running program and it’s very important to remember that those with more experience had to start from the beginning too. If you know someone who is actively moving, ask them about their journey or experience and you will likely get some great advice and loads of encouragement.

Often times people belittle themselves for years of inactivity or worry that they will fail if they try something new. The first step in how to make walking and/or running a habit is to forgive yourself for being inactive or making unhealthy choices and don’t allow the shame of it to keep you stuck. Instead, start right where you are and take it one step at a time!

Worried about what non-runners think? Try not to – it’s much more likely they will be impressed by your motivation, and I’m sure many will be wishing they could muster the same courage and determination. The people who really matter will very likely be supportive of your new found efforts taking noticeable steps to improve both your physical and mental well-being.

The truth of that mater is that the walking and running community and road races are such an inclusive group of people. If you visit any finish line you will find participants of all abilities and of varying shapes, sizes and age. You will find faster runners hanging around and encouraging the final walkers of any event. You will soon wonder what you were concerned about as your enjoyment and sense of achievement will far outweigh any of your concerns. 

If you need more encouragement to move, implementing a 30 minute walk each day can improve heart health, strengthen bones, reduce body fat, boost muscle power, significantly improve your mood and happiness. 

Coastal Race Productions is committed to community movement. We are gearing up for our annual Fall Program – She Moves, a 10 Week self-paced program for women of all abilities. You can walk, walk/run or run – it’s up to you!  For more information or to register visit  There are also 3 weekly meet ups that are for both men and women: Monday evening 6:00pm at 75 Clubhouse Rd, Sunset Beach (Sea Trail Convention Center), every Tuesday evening 6:00pm at Mulberry Park, 123 Mulberry St, Shallotte and every Saturday morning 8:00am at 3003 E Oak Island Dr at the Oak Island Rec Center.

Hope you’ll join us – Walk, Run, Just Move!